Memorial Day marks the biggest weekend in worldwide motorsports, as three marquee events take place – the Indianapolis 500 for the Verizon IndyCar Series, the Coca-Cola 600 for the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series and the Monaco Grand Prix for Formula One.
The winners at Indy and Charlotte usually head to New York early on the Tuesday after the race for media and promotional activities after their respective big events, and this year was no different.
Those events, including interviews, photo opportunities, appearances on morning and sports television shows and ringing the opening bell at the stock markets, are scheduled separately by INDYCAR and NASCAR.
So it was a pure and unexpected confluence of luck and coincidence when 101st Indianapolis 500 presented by PennGrade Motor Oil winner Takuma Sato and Coca-Cola 600 winner Austin Dillon ended up in the same boarding area in Teterboro (New Jersey) Airport, just outside New York, on Tuesday night.
“That was so random fate,” Dillon said. “I had just had a long dinner in New York and getting to the airport, and a guy I’m with was like, ‘I think that’s Takuma Sato.’ And a guy he was with was like, ‘I think that’s Austin Dillon.’”
Dillon and Sato compared their respective race champion’s rings, posed for a few pictures and a short video for social media and talked. While their chat only lasted a minute or two, they’re racers. So, of course, it was inevitable that talk about a future episode of “The Double,” in which Sato and Dillon would compete in the Indianapolis 500 and the Coca-Cola 600 on the same day, was part of their brief chat.
“It was pretty cool,” Dillon said.
— Austin Dillon (@austindillon3) May 31, 2017